378 families in Bukidnon flee as ‘Yolanda’ makes landfall

MALAYBALAY CITY (MindaNews/08 November) – A total of 378 families or 1,190 individuals had responded to calls for preemptive evacuation in parts of Bukidnon as of 10:00 a.m. Friday as super typhoon “Yolanda” swept across the Visayas and northern and eastern Mindanao.

The evacuees came from 14 villages in two towns in northern Bukidnon, according to a report from the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (PDRRMC).

Of the total number of families, 208 are from six of the 13 barangays in Impasugong namely, La Fortuna, Kibenton, Sayawan, Poblacion, Capitan Bayong, and Guihean.

Sayawan registered the biggest number of evacuees with 61 families or 209 individuals. The evacuees were housed at the barangay hall, day care center and multi-purpose building, the report cited.

Sayawan lies at the foot of Mt. Tago in the central part of the town, while La Fortuna and Kibenton are located below the Mt. Kitanglad Range. The other villages are also located in the uplands.

All rescue teams and vehicles were put on standby at the area command center, and the town procured medicines and food for emergency, according to the PDRRMC report.

The first to report preemptive evacuations is the DRRMC of Malitbog town. As of Friday, a total of 150 families have evacuated with some 50 families coming from Barangay Silo-o, a village next to a river with the same name.

The other evacuees came from barangays Poblacion, San Luis, Patpat, Mindagat, Sta. Inez and Omagling.

Impasugong shares boundary with Agusan del Sur province and Malitbog with Misamis Oriental province. Both provinces were placed under typhoon warning signal no.1.

In Valencia City, about 20 families responded to calls for preemptive evacuations yesterday in barangay Sugod, Cherilyn Oliverio, a radio operator at the City DRRMC office told MindaNews via telephone Friday morning. The families took temporary shelter at the village’s covered court.

Classes were suspended Friday in Malaybalay City in the pre-school to secondary levels; Valencia City elementary level; Kalilangan and Cabanglasan elementary and secondary levels; and in Impasugong, Pangantucan and Baungon all levels.

Classes and work were already suspended as of Nov. 7 in Bukidnon’s first district which comprises the towns of Sumilao, Manolo Fortich, Libona, Malitbog, Baungon and Talakag.

In Cabanglasan, Mayor Renante Inocando ordered a 24/7 duty for the municipal rescue, quick response team and medical teams. He also ordered that all rescue vehicles should be put on standby.

According to the PDRRMC report, relief goods were already prepared for outright distribution to affected families.

In Baungon, which was hit by typhoon Sendong in December 2011, classes were already suspended as of Thursday.

Its barangay DRRMCs were ordered to enforce preemptive evacuation of families in identified “high risk and disaster-prone areas”.

The local DRRMC also ordered that heavy equipment, private and public vehicles be put on standby for possible evacuation and rescue, among other measures, according to the PDRRMC report.

As of 11:45 a.m. Friday there had been no reports of power interruptions from both the First Bukidnon Electric Cooperative and the Bukidnon Second Electric Cooperative. (Walter I. Balane/MindaNews)